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F540 Operations Record Book July 1955.
RAF Museum Hendon. Holds 2nd copy of F540 1945 to 1970.
PLACE DATE TIME SUMMARY OF EVENTS                     COMPILING OFFICER   __Fg. Off. C. Boyack.___ Refs

chasboyack.jpg, 1427 bytes

R.A.F. JEVER 1-7-55             All pilots, and those airmen on the advanced party from Sylt, were kept very
busy today erecting tents and generally setting up house in one of the dispersals.
As we only have two small permanent offices a total of four marques and four small
tents have been erected to provide accommodation for all personnel during the day, and
storage space for spares, and stores etc.
          The main party arrived late this afternoon after a rather boring but
fairly comfortable journey from Sylt.
          There was no flying, due to a shortage of personnel and lack of starter
  2-7-55             This morning was devoted to unloading the train and distributing our
equipment either to : the dispersal for use, or at the hangar for long term storage.   The
rear road and rail parties arrived during the day so that all our personnel are now
back at Jever.   There was no flying this morning, and the airfield closed at 1230 hrs
for the week - end.
  4-7-55             Today the Squadron in company with the remainder of 2nd T.A.F. stood down
following exercise "Carte Blanche".   There was no flying.
  5-7-55             Low cloud and poor visibility restricted flying all morning and prevented
it this afternoon.   Main exercises practised were High Level Battle Formation, Dog Fights
and Tactical Descents, and the Squadron operated in formations of eight aircraft as often
as was possible.
                         Flights    22                                                             Hours 16:30
  6-7-55             The commencement of flying this morning was again delayed by low cloud, and
the first four aircraft were not airborne until 1030 hrs.   from then on however,
a good morning's training was carried out, with the emphasis again on High Level Battle
formation with Dog Fights and Tactical Descents.
          The Tactical Descent is an innovation to the Squadron brought back from
the D.F.L.S. by Flt. Lt. Vasey, and is perfectly safe but fast and fuel saving method
of returning to base through cloud.   A little experimenting has been necessary to find
the correct speed for the descent in the Sabre, but it is generally recognised that this
method of descent is reliable and well worth using.
                         Flights    17                                                 Hours    11:10
  7-7-55             The majority of flying today was carried out in formations of eight aircraft,
providing for the best part, High Level Battle formation and usually including Dog
Fights between sections of four.   Some Low Level Battle formation and navigation was also
                         Flights       24                                                    Hours    15:50
  8-7-55             Very little flying was done today because of low stratus and poor visibility,
which prevailed all morning and for the latter part of the afternoon.   The first pair
of aircraft took off at 1335 hrs, and by only 1545 all aircraft except one had landed.
Battle formation at 23,000 feet with Dog Fights and Tactical Descents was carried out.
          Our first pair of Hunters were ferried out from the United Kingdom today,
due to weather conditions at Jever they were left at Oldenburg but they will be
collected from there, as soon as possible.
          "B" Flight has been officially declared non - operational and will commence
Hunter conversion.
                       Flights       11                                                    Hours    6:30
R.A.F.Jever 9-7-55                                            This morning all Squadron pilots were issued with Pilots Notes
for the Hunter, and as might be expected a great deal of discussion followed.   Fortunately
Flt. Lt. Vasey was at hand to clear up the most obvious points of discussion, and his
services will be in great demand for some time.
                                      The efforts of the Squadron were today devoted to preparing our
Sabres for allotting away, and there was no flying.   The airfield closed at 13.30 hrs for
  11-7-55                                            The Squadron Commander, Squadron Leader Gilpin, and "B" Flight,
were occupied today with lectures on the Hunter, which form the first part of the
conversion syllabus.   Our two Hunters from Oldenburg were brought up, and two more arrived
from the United Kingdom.   Five of our Sabres were flown away, four by ferry pilots and the
other by a Squadron pilot, so our re-equipment is well, under way.
                            Flying was hampered by preparations for Sabres departing, to a certain
extent, but "A" Flight did carry out a number of High Level battle formation
                                  Flights     13                                         Hours 9:00
  12-7-55                               Poor visibility, and the shortage of manpower because of work on our
allotted away Sabres, seriously curtailed flying today.   Low level navigation was the
main training carried out.   Lectures on the Hunter conversion syllabus continue to be
given to half the Squadron.
                         Four pilots from D.F.L.S. are at present flying their Hunters from
our Station Flight here, and their main function is to rapidly convert some of our
pilots to this aircraft.   Flt Lt. Iles, "A" Flight Commander, began converting with
this detachment today.
                             Flights       11                       Hours        7:55
R.A.F.Jever 13-7-55                                            Although the weather continues fair, poor visibility continues to
affect our flying totals.   The main training carried out was close and high level battle
flying, in the latter case, with three aircraft simulating a formation of
six.   The airfield closed at 13.00 hrs for the sports afternoon.   Today Fg. Off. Blake
and Fg. Off. Pearce went to Munchen Gladbach to take part in the 2nd. T.A.F. Sports.
Fg. Off. Blake is competing in the 110 meters hurdles and Fg. Off. Pearce in the Pole
         Flights.                 Hunter 1                                       Hours.      Hunter:    :35
                                       Sabre.  9                                                         Sabre:   6:40
  14-7-55                                            Flying today included high and low level battle formation practice on
Sabres, and three "B" Flight pilots had their first conversion trips in the Hunter.
The spell of good weather is continuing, but again flying has been curtailed by
                   Flights.                  Hunter   3                         Hours.         Hunter:     1:45
                                                  Sabre:   15                                             Sabre:    10:20
  15-7-55                                 High level battle formation was carried out for most of the day, with
four aircraft simulating a formation of eight on one occasion.   The last exercise of the
day was an operational dummy air to ground strike on a target in the low flying area,
and much was learnt from it.   Hunter conversion flying is also continuing.
                      Flights:     Hunter     3                               Hours:      Hunter   2:05
                                        Sabre    16                                                 Sabre   11:00
  16-7-55                                            Today four aircraft did a "Rat and Terrier" exercise, and a further
formation of four simulated a formation of eight in high level battle formation, with
a dog fight.   There was no Hunter flying, and the airfield closed at 12.30 hrs for the week-end.
          Hunter flying at the moment is being greatly restricted by several factors.
In addition to the normal training necessary for ground crews on new types of aircraft,
there is a shortage of manpower as we are still operating with Sabres.   There is also a
shortage of ground equipment, and as several S.T.I's are required before our aircraft
can be flown, faults can only be rectified very gradually.   One case in point is a L.T.I.
which requires 2½ working days.   This L.T.I. requires the aircraft to be put on jacks
and we only have one set of jacking pads, only one aircraft can be worked on at a time.
           Flights             8                                           Hours:    5:10
  18-7-55                   The weather at first was good today but the cloud built up until by 16.15 hrs.
there was cloud from 12,000 feet up to 35,000 feet.   One cumulonimbus cloud, in the vicinity of Geilenkirchen was reported to reach 35,000 feet.
          Two "Rat and Terrier" exercises were done today, and high level battle
was also practised.   There was no Hunter flying.
              Flights        19                                                Hours     13.20
  19-7-55                       High level battle formation, with dog fights, made up the Squadron training
programme today, there was only one Hunter flight.
                    Today the first of our "First Line Reinforcements" to return to the squadron
for training arrived.   He is Flt. Lt. G.H. Beaton, who left the squadron last September,
and is now instructing at Middleton St. George.
                    Three more Hunters arrived today.
                              Flights             Hunter  1              Hours      Hunter     0:45
                                                       Sabre    15                             Sabre    11:00
  20-7-55                      There was little flying today because of poor visibility and also because
so few aircraft have hours to fly, other than those needed to reach the United Kingdom.
The airfield closed at 13:00 hrs. for sports afternoon.
                   Flights         5                        Hours       3:35
R.A.F. Jever 21-7-55                   Good weather continued today, and as two aircraft were serviceable for most
of the time, cine quarter attacks at 25,000 feet were practised in addition to high
level battle formation and dog fights.
                Three more of our Hunters arrived today, and "A" Flight have now been made
non-operational for Hunter conversion.
                   Flights               12                   Hours       9:05
  22-7-55                  The remaining half of the Squadron began their conversion on to Hunters with a
full days programs of lectures.   The general feeling on the Squadron appears to be one
rather of relief that the Hunter isn't nearly so complicated as the Sabre, but of
course the Sabre has one or two good points which we regret not having on the Hunter.
  23-7-55                  This morning all lectures on the Hunter conversion syllabus were completed, and
the pre-solo questionnaire will be taken by the pilots on Monday morning.   There was no
flying but most pilots took the opportunity of becoming fully acquainted with the Hunter's
  25-7-55                       Much of the day was spent in marking and correcting the Hunter questionnaire
which was answered this morning by a large number of pilots.   The questionnaire is very
comprehensive, as can be judged from the fact that there are 100 questions on the paper.
Three pilots attended lectures given by Squadron Leader Beagley of the Legal Branch on
Air Force Law.   These lectures, lasting from 1000hrs this morning until 16.00 hrs this
afternoon, were intended as an aid to the forthcoming promotion examinations, and were very
interesting and informative.
                    There were three Hunter flights today, one being an Air Test following compliance
with the various S.T.I.'s and L.T.I.'s, and the other two being first exercises on the
conversion syllabus.
                    Flights           Hunter  3                            Hours         Hunter          2:10
                                           Sabre    0                                                Sabre             0
R.A.F. Jever 26-7-55            Poor weather initially prevented flying until 10.30 hours, and after one flight
the only serviceable aircraft became unserviceable.   It did become serviceable again later,
as did another Hunter, but this also developed a fault on its first flight.
                            Flights Hunter:      5.                         Hours Hunter:     2:20.
  27-7-55            Flying is still very restricted by poor serviceability, and shortage of ground
equipment, but conversion flying is being carried out as quickly as can be expected.
Another pilot had his first Hunter flight this morning and three others completed their
second exercises.   The airfield closed at 12.30 hours for Sports afternoon.
                             Flights Hunter:      4.                         Hours Hunter:             3:00.
  28-7-55              Today saw the departure of six of our Sabres.   Three of the six went to
Bruggen and three to Geilenkirchen; all were flown by our own pilots.
           Hunter conversion flying is continuing, although only four flights were
carried out today on the syllabus.
           Flights Hunter:                     5.                         Hours Hunter:            3.30.
                         Sabre :                    6.                                      Sabre :            6.00.
  29-7-55              Weather helped today to reduce our Hunter flying, as only approximately the
second half of the exercises could be carried out.   Many of the pilots who were
unable to fly, however, spend a little more time in the cockpit, to become
completely au fait with our new aircraft.
           In all, nine pilots, not counting the Squadron and Flight Commanders, have
now flown the Hunter, and comments are, on the whole, quite favourable.   The Station closed
down this evening for August Grant, which will last until first parade on Wednesday
3rd August, 1955.
          Flights Hunter:                             8.                 Hours Hunter:             5.50.
                     Monthly Totals
                                Sabre   :  Flights   203.                                    Hours     143.05
                               Hunter  :  Flights      34.                                    Hours       22.30
                         Grand Total  Flights    237.                                    Hours    163.35

Commanding Officer's Summary for the Month
     This month has seen the re-arming of the Squadron with Hunter aircraft.
B" Flight going non-operational first followed by "A" Flight thirteen days later.   The
conversion is going slowly due to a shortage of some ground equipment, which slows down
the production of aircraft already off acceptance checks.
     The Squadron achieved its target on Sabres when the days available for
flying and the time each flight was operational are taken into consideration.
     The coming month should see the complete riddance of Sabre aircraft
and a considerable increase in the number of Hunters for flying, thus allowing a more
rapid conversion and the onward step towards operational status.
                          CBoyack                                                                          PWGilpin
                    (C. BOYACK)                                                                  (P.W. Gilpin)
                    Flying Officer,                                                                 Squadron Leader,
                    Compiling Officer,                                                         Officer Commanding,
                    No. 4 Squadron                                                             Number 4 Squadron
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